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Tuesday, 28 August, 2001, 09:20 GMT 10:20 UK
'Anti-English' presenter race row
Beca Brown
Beca Brown said she was racist - in an 'ironic' way
A Welsh-language television presenter who admitted she is racist and hates the English is to be reported to the Commission for Racial Equality and the police.

Beca Brown said she hated the English "as a race, as people, as a country, and for what they've done to Wales and the Welsh".

David Davies AM
David Davies said the comments were unacceptable
She was writing in Welsh affairs magazine Barn, the same publication used by former Welsh Language Board chairman John Elfed Jones in August to compare English-speaking incomers with foot-and-mouth disease.

Welsh Assembly Member for Monmouth, David Davies, said he would report the S4C contributor to the race body and the police.

He also called on the television channel to sack the broadcaster.

"These views will be totally unacceptable to the vast majority of people in Wales," he said.

'Anti-English racism'

"Would S4C employ someone who proclaimed 'I hate the blacks, Asians or Slovaks because they are black, Asian or Slovak'?

"Anti-English racism is just as bad as any other form of racism and should be dealt with in the same fashion."

S4C said Mr Davies did not understand the situation because Beca Brown was a freelance employee who contributes to the channel - she is contracted to production companies and not them.

It wouldn't be a negative thing to admit we're racist

Beca Brown
A regular on Yn Erbyn Y Wal (Against the Wall) and a former UK Journalist of the Year, outspoken Ms Brown wrote: "If there were such a thing as a Racists' Anonymous, I'd go there and say: 'I'm Beca, I'm Welsh and I'm racist.'

"I hate the English because they're the English. It's high time we told the truth.

"It wouldn't be a negative thing to admit we're racist - not a sign of weakness either, because we've got every reason to feel that way about England."

But the 28-year-old broadcaster, who is known for her direct style, admitted Welsh speakers in some parts of Wales indulged in a form of racism of their own, creating a language subclass within Wales. The comments were re-printed in a Welsh newspaper.

Commission for Racial Equality logo
The race body calls for a constructive debate
She told the BBC's Good Morning Wales programme she used her magazine column in an ironic way - which she said had been lost on Mr Davies - to draw attention to the debate.

She explained she had moved to north Wales from England and learned Welsh as a child.

"We all know the Welsh hate the English and the English hate the Welsh, if you want to put it in crude terms," she said. "It's a national sport.

"I am English myself. I have English friends, I have been in love with English people. But we have a cultural tension - we have to recognise it and move on.

"Everything that is important to me as a Welsh girl is under threat. You can't stop a problem unless you admit you have one.

Controversial remarks

The comments are the latest in a summer of controversial remarks made by prominent Welsh figures on the fragility of Welsh culture caused by outside influences.

The CRE dropped possible proceedings for inciting racial hatred against John Elfed Jones after he apologised for his remarks in Barn.

Senior Eisteddfod figure Eifion Lloyd Jones warned school headmasters about admitting non-Welsh speakers. And a Plaid Cymru vice-president, Gwilym ab Ioan, resigned after saying Wales was "a dumping ground for oddballs and social misfits."

David Davies AM
"Any kind of racism is unacceptable"
Beca Brown
"The strongest culture in the world is imposing itself on mine"
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